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What is the Lottery COVID-19 Community Wellbeing Fund?

A new $40 million lottery fund has been established to focus on community and social initiatives in the wake of COVID-19.  This fund will open on 28 October 2020. 

Lottery COVID-19 Community Wellbeing Fund will provide one-off grants for community or social initiatives that increase the strength and resilience of communities that are responding to the impacts of COVID-19.

This Fund will support hapū, iwi and community organisations that have lost funding or have an increased demand on their services due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and community or social initiatives that strengthen community resilience and respond to the impacts of COVID-19.

Ngā kaupapa matua / Priorities

The Lottery COVID-19 Community Wellbeing Fund will give priority to supporting:

  • hapū, iwi and community organisations that are delivering community and social initiatives that have been impacted by COVID-19 – either through the loss of funding sources or through extra or changed demand on their services;
  • innovative and transformative community or social initiatives that respond to the impact of COVID-19; and
  • collaborative community or social initiatives that strengthen and increase resilience in communities.

Important funding dates

Opening date: 28 October 2020

Closing date: The Fund does not have a closing date. It will remain open until all available funding has been allocated.

Ngā kaupapa ka tautokona ā-pūtea / What we fund

The Lottery COVID-19 Community Wellbeing Fund will provide one-off grants to support the following:

  • on-going operational costs for organisations that can show that they are impacted by COVID-19 and have had to expand their services and activities
  • projects beyond the day-to-day operations that show innovation or collaboration in relation to COVID-19 recovery
  • social enterprise initiatives that increase community wellbeing where communities are experiencing on-going impacts from COVID-19
  • capital items and works purchases that assist in service delivery or a community initiative up to $30,000.

Ngā kaupapa kāore e tautokona ā-pūtea / What we don't fund

The Lottery COVID-19 Community Wellbeing Fund will not fund:

  • individuals
  • research, including: large scale research plans, feasibility studies for capital projects and health research
  • major capital works over $30,000, including project management fees
  • food for food banks
  • alcohol and similar substances, for example kava
  • medical expenses, operations, treatments or the purchase of major items of health equipment
  • organisations that do not meet the Fund's priorities
  • organisations that have been fully funded through additional funding sources for the Fund's priorities
  • projects or activities completed (retrospective funding) or items bought before the request
  • requests that fit the priorities for the Lottery Minister’s Discretionary Fund.

Which Committee / Decision Maker structure should I apply to?

Grants are distributed through a national and regional decision-making approach.

 Applicants need to apply to the national Decision Makers if:  

  • they are a national organisation;
  • the grant funding request is for an initiative or service with a nationwide benefit; or
  • the grant funding request benefits two or more Lottery Community regions.

Applicants need to apply to the regional Decision Makers if:  

  • they are delivering an initiative or service which will be carried out in one of the Lottery Community regions, or a majority of the benefit will occur there; or
  • they are independent branches of national organisations (i.e. each branch is a separate legal entity), and are making a funding request for a project or service which will benefit the region in which the funding request is made.

Required supporting documentation

 Regional Funding requests

Total amount requested is less than or equal to $50,000

Documentation required for your organisation profile within our funding system.
No request documentation required.

 

Total amount requested is greater than $50,000

 

Financial records for the last 12 months required. For example a profit and loss printout.
Proof of increased demand compared to last year required (if applying on the basis of increased demand on services).

National Funding requests

Total amount requested is less than or equal to $100,000

Documentation required for your organisation profile within our funding system.
No request documentation required.

 

Total amount requested is greater than $100,000

 

Financial records for the last 12 months required. For example a profit and loss printout.
Proof of increased demand compared to last year required (if applying on the basis of increased demand on services).

Eligibility check

Getting started

To be ready to make a request you can find out more about what you will need at the links below:

If you would like more information about this Fund, please email an advisor at: COVID-19funding@dia.govt.nz.

What are some frequently asked questions about the Lottery COVID-19 Community Wellbeing Fund?

 Frequently asked questions

 1. What is the Lottery COVID-19 Community Wellbeing Fund for?

Answer: This fund has been established to assist organisations, iwi, hapū and community groups who have lost access to funding sources, have extra demand on their services or are now working in different ways in responding to COVID-19.

 2. When does the Fund close?

Answer: The Fund does not have a closing date. It will remain open until all available funding has been allocated.

 3. How do I access the Lottery Covid-19 Community Wellbeing Fund?

Answer:  You will be able to apply through our grants management system which can be accessed at the link below:

 4. How many times can my group apply?

Answer:  A group or organisation can only receive one grant.  You are able to apply for multiple priorities/initiatives within the same request.  

 5. How much can I apply for?

Answer:  There is no maximum amount that you can apply for.  A group or organisation should apply for actual costs.

 6. How long will it take to get a decision on our funding request? 

Answer:  If your request is under $200,000 for a regional request or under $250,000 for a national request then a decision will be made within 15 working days of being submitted.  Decision on all other funding requests will be made bi-monthly.

 7. How many initiatives can I apply for?

Answer:  There is no limit on the number of initiatives that you can apply for.  These all need to be applied for in a single application as an organisation or group can only receive one grant.

8. Can our sports/cultural/arts group apply?

Answer:  Yes, so long as you can show that your organisation will meet one of the priority criteria.

 9. What are community and social initiatives?

Answer:  Community initiatives and social initiatives help to strengthen community hauora, resilience and well-being.  They can support national, regional or local needs, and can be specific to a particular community, or support a wider range of social demographics.  Ultimately, community and social initiatives should benefit people by delivering positive and up-lifting support where it is needed most.

10. Our organisation received part funding for our increased services through another contract/grant funder. Will this affect our request to this fund?

Answer:  We expect that some organisations will have received partial funding from other sources, or have additional need in an area that has not been fully funded.  The intent of the Fund is to help when there has been an increased need for services or where there has been a reduction in funding due to COVID-19.  Having received partial funding elsewhere will not affect your ability to apply under this fund, but the shortfall will need to be explained in your application.

11. Who can I talk to about a possible funding application?

Answer: Contact a local advisor by phoning 0800 824 824, or visit The Community Matters list of offices or email COVID-19funding@dia.govt.nz

12. Is there a specific pool of funding avaliable for each region?

Answer: Yes. Approximately $20m of the total funding has been allocated across regions. The allocation is based on population and isolation.

 13. How will requests be assessed?

Answer: Requests will be assessed against how well they meet the criteria and align to the purpose of the fund. Decision makers will also base their decisions on community need and level of impact the services or project in the request will make in the community.

14. How long do we have to spend a grant?

Answer: Successful grant recipients have 12 months from the decision date to report on their grant. If successful the date will be included in the result report that will be available in the online grant management system. 

15. We have had increased need for service, but it is hard to prove that it was because of COVID-19. What do we do?

Answer: Requests need to demonstrate the increased need has come about due to the impact of COVID-19.  This can be anecdotal or data driven. Decision makers will use this crucial information to inform their decision making.  Our community advisors are happy to chat with you about your application and how it addresses increased need due to COVID-19.

16. If we go into lockdown again and our projects are delayed as a result how will this be managed? 

Answer: Should this happen or if there is a change in circumstance, groups are encouraged to contact the Department to discuss how this can be managed.

17. How much information do we have to write in our application?

Answer: There is no word limit however applicants are encouraged to be succinct.

18. We are a non-legal branch of a national organisation. Can we apply separately from the national body for funding?

Answer: Requests from non-legal entities that are branches of national or regional legal entities should come from the legal entity only.

19. Can we apply for multi-year funding if we expect a deficit for the next two years?

Answer: Funding is available for one off single year grants only.

20. We have received a Lottery grant in the past twelve months. Can we apply for funding from this fund?

Answer: Yes a group may apply for funding from the Lottery COVID-19 Community Wellbeing fund and other Lottery funding within the same 12 months. Decision makers will consider past history with the Department as part of their decision making. 

21. Can we apply to the Lottery COVID-19 Community Wellbeing fund and the Lottery Community Fund for the same purpose?

Answer: Yes, groups may apply to the Lottery Community fund and the Lottery COVID-19 Community Wellbeing Fund. The applications can be for the same purpose. However the request to the Lottery COVID-19 Community Wellbeing fund must show how the funding is needed due to the impact of COVID-19.

 22. Is the intention to fully fund? 

Answer: Decision makers will consider several factors when deciding to fund and how much to fund. These include: alignment to funding priorities, how well a request aligns to criteria, community impact and community need.

23. Does our request have to meet all four priorities to be eligible?

Answer: A request only needs to meet one of the priorities to be eligible for funding. 

24. How quickly do I have to apply to ensure our application will be considered?

Answer: The fund is open until the total allocation is spent. Applicants are encouraged to apply as quickly as possible. Groups should take the time to consider what they really need, ensure all documentation is provided at the time of submitting the request and the request form is completed as thoroughly as possible.

25. Do we need to provide quotes with our application?

Answer: Quotes are only required for capital works projects. Two quotes are required in most cases. If due to rural isolation this is not possible please contact an advisor to discuss your application.